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Talking points from the Arizona Cardinals’ first defeat of the season

The Arizona Cardinals were the only remaining unbeaten franchise as we entered gameweek eight of the regular NFL season, and Kliff Kingsbury’s men were looking at an 8-0 record for their first time in their 100-year history as they hosted the Green Bay Packers at the University of Phoenix Stadium.

Yet, against all the odds on betting sites like  Betdaq,  the Packers ran out 24-21 victors in Phoenix — taking their seasonal record to 7-1 while dealing the Cardinals with their first defeat of the season. It is a bitter pill to swallow for the Arizona-based franchise, especially in the circumstances in which they lost, but given their form this season, we’re sure they will bounce back.

In the meantime, as they are left to lick their wounds, let’s take a look at some of the key talking points from the thrilling game. Read on to find out more!

Cardinals blow a massive chance to win

2ndandgoal. 15 seconds remaining on the clock. The ideal position for the Cardinals when trailing 24-21. A touchdown would have won them the game and with Kyler Murray at quarterback, everyone in the stadium would have been feeling confident. However, in an attempt to find A.J Green in the end zone, the 24-year-old’s pass was intercepted by the Packers’ cornerback, Rasul Douglas, a former member of the Cardinals’ practice squad— ending all their hopes of going 8-0. It wasn’t the only error that cost Arizona though, with Murray throwing another interception in his own half earlier in the game, while a failed attempt to catch a punt left the Packers at 1standgoal.

Packers cope well without their stars

As if the Packers weren’t up against it enough, having to travel to Arizona to take on the unbeaten Cardinals in a short week, they had to do so without several of their key players. Star wide receiver Devante Adams was the biggest loss, after he tested positive for Covid-19, while fellow WRs Allen Lazard (Covid) and Marquez Valdes-Scantling (hamstring) also missed out. QB Aaron Rodgers relied on running back Aaron Jones, who made an impressive seven catches and scored a touchdown, and veteran Randall Cobb, whose two second half TDs proved vital in the Packers’ victory.

Cardinals’ offensive communication needs to be better

Offensively, the Cardinals have been a team in sync for the most part of this season. The defeat to the Packers was just the second time they have failed to score less than 30 points this year — the other coming in the 17-10 win over the San Francisco 49ers. However, against Green Bay, they weren’t on the same page for most ofthe first three quarters. The Cardinals had their possession turned over three times in the first half, and the second started with a sack from Dean Lowry and a costly interception from Henry Black — a turnover that resulted in a Packers touchdown. Arizona seemed to click in the latter stages of the game, with two touchdown runs from James Conner. But Murray’s late interception was further proof of an offensive off-day.

Asked for an explanation on why the Cardinals suffered their first defeat of the regular season, Murray  said: “I honestly don’t know. Miscommunication, I couldn’t tell you. But, we just have got to be better.”

What’s next for the two franchises?

Now top of the National Football Conference (NFC) standings, the Packers will be hoping to keep up their fine form and extend their seven-game winning streak with a victory over the out-of-sorts Kansas City Chiefs (3-4) at Arrowhead Stadium. For the Cardinals, they travel to San Francisco to take on the 49ers (2-4) at Levi’s Stadium, hoping they can get back to winning ways in the Bay City.

 

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